Union County, NJ – The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders is pleased to announce that grants have been awarded to 42 garden projects in 14 municipalities through the Union County Means Green Community Garden Grants program.
“Through the UC Means Green program, we bring the benefits of community gardening to people from many different walks of life throughout Union County, including those who may find it difficult to access conventional garden plots,” said Freeholder Chair Bette Jane Kowalski. “This year, our awardees range from historic sites and libraries to facilities for seniors, the homeless, and people with disabilities and special needs.”
“UC Means Green helps Union County residents of all ages improve their nutrition and their awareness of environmental stewardship. Our awardees also provide fresh vegetables for local food pantries, they organize education and recreation events, and they create new opportunities to for our youth to participate in community service,” said Freeholder Vice Chairman Alexander Mirabella.
Grants from UC Means Green have helped to improve existing community gardens, start new gardens and transform empty lots into thriving centers for social and educational activities, with hundreds of pounds of fresh produce consumed and donated to local food pantries each year.
The grant program launched in 2016 and is administered on behalf of the Freeholder Board by the non-profit organization Groundwork Elizabeth.
This year Union County Means Green awarded pre-budgeted grants for starting new gardens, including a choice of raised beds, waist-high accessible beds for seniors and people with disabilities, or “Earth Boxes” that enable gardening in tight spaces.
The program also awarded block grants for expanding or improving gardens, pre-budgeted grants for starting pollinator plots that include edible plants, and pre-budgeted grants for hydroponic gardens, enabling the gardening experience to continue throughout the winter months.
The 2019 awardees are:
Berkeley Heights Environmental Commission (2 accessible beds, $1300); Berkeley Heights Learning Community Garden at Littell-Lord Farmstead
Hanson Park Conservancy (2 accessible beds, $500); Hanson Park Conservancy Community Garden, 38 Springfield Avenue
Housing Authority City of Elizabeth (2 accessible beds, $1300); Farley Towers Community Garden, 33 Cherry Street
BEAM Housing Services, Inc. (6 Earth Boxes + 1 accessible bed, $1300);
Heritage Village Garden, 225 Second Street
YMCA of Eastern Union County (garden improvements, $500); The Gateway Family YMCA Child Care Center, 1150 Dickinson Street
City of Elizabeth (garden improvements, $500); Peterstown Senior Garden, 418 Palmer Street,
City of Elizabeth (2 accessible beds, $1300); The Stephen Sampson Center Garden, 800 Anna Street
City of Elizabeth (4 raised beds, $1300); The Liberty Square Garden in Love, Liberty Square Senior Citizen Center
Jewish Family Service of Central NJ (hydroponic garden, $3000); Jewish Family Service Urban Community Vegetable Garden, 655 Westfield Avenue
PISC Vira Verde Nova Mocidade (garden improvements, $500); Vira Verde Nova Mocidade Garden, 417 US Highway 1
Josephine’s Place (garden improvements $500); Josephine’s Place Garden of Peace, 622 Elizabeth Avenue
Prevention Links (2 raised beds +1 accessible bed, $1300); E’Port Community Center Garden, 250 Second Street
YMCA of Eastern Union County (pollinator garden, $750); YMCA Elizabeth Branch Community Garden, 135 Madison Avenue
Communities in Cooperation, Inc. (garden improvements, $500); CIC Community Garden, 1025 John Street, Linden
New Providence United Methodist Church/New Providence Garden Club (pollinator garden, $750); Serenity Garden, 1441 Springfield Avenue
New Providence Memorial Library (pollinator garden, $750); The Library Garden, 377 Elkwood Avenue
DuCret School of Art (6 Earth Boxes + 1 accessible bed, $1300); DuCret Community Garden, 1030 Central Avenue
Richmond Towers Residence Association (hydroponic garden, $3000); Richmond Towers Residence Association Gardens, 520 E. Front Street
Be the Change — Kean University (hydroponic garden, $3000); Park Hotel Edible Landscape, 123 West 7th Street
Cedarbrook Park Apartments (4 raised beds, $1300); Cedarbrook Park Apartments Community Garden, 1272 Park Avenue
Youth Felicitares/Stone Square Mason Lodge (4 raised beds, $1300); Queen City Community Garden, Berkeley Terrace
City of Rahway (garden improvements, $500); Rahway Community Garden, 537 Central Avenue
Rahway Community Action Organization (garden improvements, $500); RCAO Community Garden, 809 E. Hazelwood Avenue
Amalfe Senior and Community Center, garden improvements, $500); BT Mathis and Diane Mathis Community Garden, 1268 Shaffer Avenue
Roselle Park Environmental Commission (pollinator garden, $750); Roselle Park Community Garden, 133 Valley Road
Roselle Park Environmental Commission (garden improvements, $500); Roselle Park Community Garden, 133 Valley Road
Township of Scotch Plains (garden improvements, $3000); Scotch Plains Community Garden at Frazee House
Scotch Plains Garden Club (2 accessible beds, $1300); Scotch Plains Community Garden at Frazee House
Scotch Plains-Fanwood YMCA (hydroponic Garden, $3000); YMCA Square Foot Garden, 1340 Martine Avenue
Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish/Township of Scotch Plains (garden improvements, $2000); Community Garden of Immaculate Heart of Mary Church, 1571 S. Martine Avenue
Township of Springfield (garden improvements, $1500); Springfield Township Community Garden
Township of Springfield (pollinator garden, $750); Springfield Township Pollinator Garden, N. Trivett Avenue and Center Street
Springfield Free Public Library (2 raised beds + 1 accessible bed, $1300); Lettuce Read and Grow Garden, 66 Mountain Avenue
Summit Area YMCA (garden improvements, $500); Summit ACHIEVE Community Garden, Beauvoir Place and Beauvoir Avenue
Union Township Adult Community Development (2 accessible beds, $1300); Thomas A. Ehrhart Gardens, 100 Francis Court
Union Senior Residents Housing Corporation (hydroponic garden, $3000); James Schaefer Garden, 35 W. Summer Avenue
YMCA of Eastern Union County (hydroponic garden, $3000); Gateway Family YMCA Five Points Branch Community Garden, 201 Tucker Avenue
Township of Union (2 accessible beds, $1300); Township of Union Community Garden, Eleanor R. Erickson Park, Liberty Avenue
YMCA of Eastern Union County (garden improvements, $500); Gateway Family YMCA W.I.S.E Center Branch at United Methodist Church
First United Methodist Church of Westfield/Westfield Community Center (garden improvements, $500); Justice Garden, 1 East Broad Street
Additionally, YWCA Eastern Union County received an award of $3000 for a hydroponic garden, for its “Growing for Health” project at a domestic violence shelter in Union County.
For more information about Groundwork Elizabeth visit online at groundworkelizabeth.org.
For quick links to all Union County environmental programs, activities and services visit The Green Connection, ucnj.org/green-connection.
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